Microsoft Windows Azure platform enters the cloud market

The Windows Azure cloud computing platform has Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) capabilities, which could help it compete with Amazon and Google's cloud offerings.

Systems Channel News Roundup for the week of Jan. 4-8, 2010.

Microsoft launches Windows Azure to compete in cloud market

Microsoft has released the much anticipated Windows Azure to keep pace in the cloud computing market.

The company said in November that the Azure platform will have Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) capabilities, but IaaS is not yet included in the introductory special, which is a free entry-level package. The available packages come in four different sizes of "computing instances," which are known as Amazon's equivalent to virtual machine sizes. The default size that each customer receives is 20 instances, although more can be obtained from Microsoft if needed.

After Microsoft confirms that an account is ready for the cloud, customers can then upload their application and configuration files, according to virtualization.info.

Gartner buys Burton Group

Gartner's purchase of the Burton Group is expected to expand Gartner's reach into the IT research market.

In an acquisition that should increase operational efficiencies and decrease expenses, Gartner Inc. bought the research and advisory services firm for approximately $56 million in cash.

Burton Group has roughly 41 research analysts, 40 sales and client service associates and a $30 million projected revenue for 2009.

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